MANILA, Philippines – After fierce opposition from cyclists, commuters, and other advocates, the plan to convert the protected bicycle lanes on Ayala Avenue in Makati City into “shared” lanes with motor vehicles will no longer push through.
In a joint statement on Friday, February 24, Ayala Land Incorporated, Makati Business Club, and the #MakeItSaferMakati movement said the protected bike lanes would be maintained.
“After a series of conversations in the past two weeks, all parties agreed that it is to everyone’s benefit that Ayala Avenue remain a safe, convenient, and inclusive transport corridor for all road users – including pedestrians, commuters, cyclists, and motorists,” the statement read.
Ayala Avenue will “continue to host a physically protected and enforced bike lane” with bollards to separate cyclists from other vehicles and road studs for better visibility.
The groups also agreed to “jointly study and implement various street design solutions,” with plans to establish a technical working group and “open dialogue” to improve transport schemes on Ayala Avenue.
The protected bike lanes were supposed to be converted into “sharrows” or “shared” lanes on February 15, but the move was met with much opposition. Just days after it was announced on Make It Makati’s Facebook page, cyclists, commuters, and even car driver allies took to the streets to protest the proposed conversion.
Prior to Friday’s announcement, the conversion had already been deferred to March 6.
“Moved by a common vision and commitment, ALI, #MakeItSaferMakati, and MBC commit to making this partnership a model for collaboration between people, local government units, and developers in promoting bike- and commuter-friendly places and cities all around the Philippines,” the statement read. – Rappler.com
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